Press freedom at risk in Myanmar today

Press freedom in Myanmar is eroding as journalists and other media workers face increasing restrictions in connection with their work. Reuters journalists Wa Lone and Kyaw Soe Oo have been in detention since December 2017 for investigating a military massacre of 10 Rohingya men. They face up to 14 years in prison if tried and found guilty under the Official Secrets Act. Join us to hear firsthand accounts of persecution the free press endures in order to report on military violence against the Rohingya in Rakhine State. These guests are visiting Washington in conjunction with PEN America awarding Wa Lone and Kyaw Soe Oo the PEN America/Barbey Freedom to Write Award. Lawi Weng is a senior reporter for The Irrawaddy, one of the few media organizations that has long provided independent coverage of politics and national issues in Myanmar, even while the country was controlled by the military, before the start of a democratic transition in 2011. Lawi Weng has repeatedly risked his life to report on military abuses against ethnic minorities in Myanmar, seeking to give a voice to victims of state sponsored murder, rape and displacement. Eaint Thiri Thu has worked for seven years for a variety of news organizations, including The New York Times, The Washington Post, the Wall Street Journal, and the BBC, reporting on conflicts and the media in Myanmar, mainly in the conflict affected areas of Rakhine, Shan, and Kachin States. She has also done research for Human Rights Watch, the U.S. Holocaust Memorial Museum, and other international organizations to produce numerous reports and research on conflicts and human rights–including on the ongoing Rohingya/Rakhine crisis. When: Thursday, May 24th 3:00 – 4:30pm Where:Russell Senate Office Building, Room 385 Washington D.C., United States Please RSVP using this form by Wed, May 23rd.